Summer 2019 Defense Comment 25 and have had the opportunity to do so. Having been so advised, I hereby agree to waive any potential conflict of interest and further agree to Law Firm’s continued and future representation of Client B. I further agree and consent to not assert any such conflict of interest or to seek to disqualifyLawFirmfromrepresenting Client B, notwithstanding any adversity that may develop. DATED: ____________________ Client A The mistake that occurs with this disclosure and conflict waiver to be signed by the clients is that attorneys put these disclosures in legal services agreements or retention letters to clients. This is not per se wrong, but the attorney sets himself or herself up for an argument that the language was buried in a heap of other legalese that the client did not read or understand. If you do put them in legal services agreements or retention letters, the paragraphs should contain a space for each client’s initials or signature so you can argue later that they read the particular provisions and understood them. The better practice is to put the disclosure and conflict waiver in a separate, standalone document for each client’s consideration so there is no question that the clients received the letter and, if signed, cannot argue that it was not understood. CONCLUSION There is no magic to representing multiple defendants. Most of the time, the clients all have the same objective and are on the same page. The difficulty is making sure you, as the attorney, meet your ethical obligations set forth in Rule 1.7. All it takes is an understanding of the facts and/or claims asserted so that you can advise the clients in writing accordingly and obtain written consent to waive any potential conflicts. Every client must receive the written disclosures and every client must executethewaiver. Absentthat,youcannot represent all of the defendants. Do not let this fall through the cracks. Be diligent in ensuring the disclosures have been sent to each client and each client has returned the executed waiver. Do not commence the representation without these i’s dotted and t’s crossed. It is simple to do and probably takes no more than an hour to accomplish. This ounce of prevention will save you a hugeheadacheanddentinyourpocketbook with future premiums and deductibles should the relationship sour and the clients sue you for breach of fiduciary duty. William A. Muñoz Bill Muñoz is a shareholder atMurphyPearsonBradley & Feeney in Sacramento, where he specializes in legal malpractice and other business matters. He received his Bachelor’s degree from University of California, Davis, and his J.D. from Hamline University School of Law. The Lawyer's Lawyer – continued from page 24 ERNEST A. LONG Alternative Dispute Resolution ❖ Resolution Arts Building ❖ 2630 J Street • Sacramento, California 95816 Telephone: (916) 442-6739 • Facsimile: (916) 442-4107 elong@ernestalongadr.com www.ernestalongadr.com